Transport of N by hyphae of a vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus was studied under controlled experimental conditions. The N source was applied to the soil as (NH4+)-N-15 or (NH3-)N-15. Cucumis sativus was grown for 25 days, either alone or in symbiosis with Glomus intraradices, in containers with a hyphal compartment separated from the root compartment by a fine nylon mesh. Mineral N was then applied to the hyphal compartment as (NH4+)-N-15 or (NO3-)-N-15 at 5 cm distance from the root compartment. Soil samples were taken from the hyphal compartment at 1, 3 and 5 cm distance from the root compartment at 7 and 12 days after labelling, and the concentration of mineral N in the samples was measured from 2 M KCl extracts. Mycorrhizal colonization did not affect plant dry weight. The recovery of N-15 in mycorrhizal plants was 38 or 40%, respectively, when (NH4+)-N-15 or (NO3-)-N-15 was applied. The corresponding values for non-mycorrhizal plants were 7 and 16%. The higher N-15 recovery observed in mycorrhizal plants than in non-mycorrhizal plants suggests that hyphal transport of N from the applied N-15 sources towards the host plant had occurred. The concentration of mineral N in the soil of hyphal compartments was considerably less in mycorrhizal treatments than in controls, indicating that the hyphae were able to deplete the soil for mineral N.